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LOCAL AND GENERAL NEWS.

The Council of the Chamber of Commerce met yesterday and diicusaed several uiatiers of very great importance. On* of the chief was that of an alternative telegraph line between Auckland and Wellington, and the feeling was to work for this object, in season and out of season, until it was attained. It was further decided to support the Hon, Mr. Carroll's proposal to construct a light railway from Rqtorua to Gisborrje, Mr. S. Vaile presented a comprehensive scheme of light railways for the North Island, which ha snitl could be carried out at less coat than completing the central route. A step farther was taken in the direction of holding an industrial exhibition similar to those lield in Wellington and Christchurch, Yesterday afternoon Mr. Brabant, S.M,, fixed the hail in the cases against John Douglas, seven charges in all, at £1700. This bail, it is stated, will be found by five citizens—two of £500 each, two of £230 each, and one of £200. It is understood accused will be bailed out to-day, the sureties and bail having been approved by the police authorities. The petition in bankruptcy, already served upon accused, comes up at the Supreme Court on Friday. The question of supplying the adjacent districts with water from the Onehunga Springs is to be submitted to the burgesses of the Borough to-day, when a poll will be taken to express approval or disapproval of the Council's proposal to borrow the sum of £12,000 to provide the necessary plant and machinery for that purpose. Terms have bun arrived at between the Onebunpa Borough Council and the adjacent districts on the question, and it now remains for the people of Onehunga to decide whether or not th? scheme shall be pqfe Into operation. > • ; Th* names of Messrs. Andrew Bell and Eugater have been added to the oommittae formed by the Chamber Pf Commerce, to formulate » «heme for W exhibition IP Auckland. ■ Already over a hundred nam* ate on the list, and others are to be added.

We have to acknowledge receipt of the Journal of the Department of Labour for May. rtport op the labour marked for Auckland u—building trades, brisk; engineering, iron, etc., steady. The boot trade ie good for the season. In the clothing trade, (he factor)* are brisk, and tailoring (order work) quiet. As, to the genial retail trade a good business is W'ng, With respect -to unskilled labour th§ number of applicants is steadily increasing, Numbers are reported to be out of employment on the goldflelds. ' In Gisborne the building trades are vsry quiet, and in the retail trade the business is very slack. As to unskilled labour, a large nqnjW of applicants are idje. At Russell one hundred and thirty men jiave found employment on the oyster beds in $9 district. The fish factories have only been working half-time, owjng to the scarcity of fish. The whale season commences about the 20kh proximo. For the erection of the Taiharuru Native School, the tender of A. Williams, Wjiangargi, has been accepted at £486 9s. Repairs, Mauku Bridge (Drury to Waiuku Road), accepted. 0. H. Frankham, Auckland. £160; declined, 0, Henry and Sons. Patumahoe, £211 lis 2d, and W. J. McFadden, Patumahop, £295. Bark shed, Wairangi (Stock Department), ' accepted, A. Watson, Auckland, £309 9s 6d; declined, C. H. Frankham, Auckland, £310; W. G. Smith, Auckland, £350. Tenders are now being invited for. the erection of native schools at Karioi, Te Kuiti, and Apareora. There were op co-operative works under Government Departments in April last:—Survey Department, 1565 labourers; Public Works Department, 138 artisans aqd 670 labourers; Labour Department, 44! grand total, 2417

In reference to a notice which has been served upon some of the shopkeepers by the City Engineer as to having gaslights under verandahs, without permission from, or application to, the City Council, we are informed that the by-law, which hag been many years in existence, inhibits the placing of any gaslights under verandahs but that the Council pas usually granted permits subject to the condition that they are enclosed within frames, but of latp large numbers of naked gaslights have been placed without any permit or application. The matter was brought under the notice of the Council, and it is believed that in some places these naked lights are an element of danger, notably round the City Hall, where large numbers of these lights are placed under the verandah, over which the public would have to escape from the City Hall in case of fire. As it was necessary that there should be some proper regulations in this matter the subject was referred to the Streets Committee, who recommend that all lights should be covered or removed in torm9 of the by-laws. This recommendation was brought before the Council at its last meeting, and adopted. Thereupon the City Engineer initiated the notices accordingly. It will be learned with regret that yesterday morning Mr. Thomas Thompson, jun., the eldest son of the Hon. Thos. Thompson (Minister of Defence and Justice), passed away at the residence of the family, Mount Eden, at the early age of 42. Deceased had been ill for the last two months, suffering from pneumonia and heart disease, The Hon.T. Thompson came up from the South on the occasion of his son's illness,' and i stayed in Auckland until ib was thought the crisis had been safely surmounted. He is at present in Dunedin on a departmental Visit, and was informed of his son's death by telegram yesterday morning, and will arrive here from the South on Saturday, The i()terqa<B{ib will take place on Sunday next. Mr. Thompson, junior, has been for the past two years in the Goyernmflnb service it Auckland as Deputy Registrar of births, marriages, and deaths. He was of a genial disposition, and was very much esteemed both ip his private and public relations, and his comparatively early death will be regretted by a large number of friends and acquaintances, At the meeting of the Wqwn'e Democratio Union last.eyeping, a vote of condolence was iinflnjmpi(»ly passed, the resolution to be forwarded to the Hon. t. Thompson and family, sympathising with them in their bereavement.

Some time ago the lf\te chairman of the Otago Education Board referred to the rccord reign celebrations, and remarked that hp thought that the Board might well order that the midwinter holidays should cover the period of national rejoiping, and should use their influence with the railway authorities to furnish cheap railway fares— cheaper than the ordinary excursion rates fpr the thousands of school children who might be brought into the city, or who might wish to go into the country during that period. The Minister of Railways, to whom the suggestion was referred by the Hon. Mr. Walker wjth a strong recommendation in its favour, has now approved of jt, and baa decided that all schools in the colony shall, in view of th» special occasion, do allowed to travel at the fares prescribed for Bchool excursions, provided that the trips are not to be taken on any declared public holiday. Our Pukekohe correspondent records the death of Mrs, Robert Wilkinson, passed away on Saturday afternoon. Deceased was a sister of Dr. Dawson, of this city, and daughter-in-law of Mr. Thomas Wilkinson, one of the most highly respected settlers of the Pukekohe district. She leaves her (insbarjd with two young children to mourn their loss, for whom the greatest sympathy is felt in the neighbourhood. The funeral took place at the Pukekohe Cemetery on Sunday, and was attended by a large number of relatives and friends, the Rev. Mr. Dobson officiating at the grave.

The Police Court is certainly requiring the attention of someone. For the last week pr so large pieces of the plastered ceiling have bepn falling into the interior of the court, to the inconvenience of those having business at the solicitors table, while the hands of the clock have pointed so long to ten minutes to twelve, that it should prove rather difficult to move them now. A somewhat singi\lar result has followed the great gale of January SOth last. II) will be remembered tint owing to the force of the wind, and, u some thought the carrying of sea spray from the Western coast, the foliage of fruit trees was shrivelled up and withored. A few weeks afterwards fresh blossoms appeared on the denuded portions of the trees which then, ill many instances, presented the spectacle of one half a tree in full fruit-bearing and the other half in bloom. In fairly sheltered places _ the second bloom has. now changed to fruit, and a not to be despised crop of young apples, of about a month or si* weeks growth are now to be seen.

The first prosecution under the Licensing Act of a Miller Flat publican for selling adulterated liquor ended in the discomfiture of the inspector, Mr. Hawkins, 8.M., ruled that there had' been no sale, in the (iret place, because the inspector had demanded, under section 181, & sample from the octave which contained the alleged adulterated whisky, and having paid for it took it) away with him; but, since the publican was not at liberty to refuse to sell, there was 110 " sale " within the meaning of the Act. And in order to secure a conviction it must be proved that something had been added to the liquor which was injurious to health. On both these grounds the inspector had failed to prove his case. <■ A remarkably thoughtless act was performed by a recently, While cleaning out at Giiborne recently, _ While cleaning out bis eiip. he placed a lighted match at one end, and put the Other end to his raoufh to blow down it, the more effeotiyelyito clear away any obstructions that might be I ni l ilb. The obstruction! came away ail right, but not quite in the way intended. It '"''" ", natefy happened that there was a quantity of powder ill the barrel, #nd this caused somewhat severe injur?®' W .W? operator's mouth, He fas at once taken ip the hospital. '< The New Zealand Amateur Golf Championship Meeting was compence? on tne Auckland Links, Green tan?, . wsterdsy, when the first and second rounds of the championship match were completed. Tne day proved a disastrous' one to the Auckland competitors,' aliiof whom, with the exception of Mr. C. E. 8, Gillies, JfVt put Mb ThH.eiqtlwan i a the wndrflunP W»t and debated Mr. Dunfan, p(,Wellington, who was. looked upon as psrhSM.tne most dangeroat opponent of the Tinting contingent, the winner'! score Woe ® "ft; and 5 to play. Mr. Gilliee is looked upon ■as likely to prove the winner oMbie Me™ l ; The championship matohei will be continued tj)ismor(iing, endthefycey ich; 'h competitors haye entered, W&I WgiPf. .this afternoon at 1.10 o'clock. Details of the play appear in'aaothercolamn. :; *

ft) is claimed that the number of c»w» treated at the Wellington Hospital is equalled by few hospitals in tha colony, The annual receipts for the y«r wwunt to £13,778 6s, and the expenditure to £11,639 las sd, of which £3081 lis fid goes for provisions and £325|S 3i lid for wages. The annual returns show that during the year 1627 patients have been treated at an average cost of 3s 4Jd a day, or 3d less than lasf year. They have been of all nationalities, comprising Africans,' Japanese, Chinese, Russians, Swiss, Italians, Swedes, Greeks, Assyrians, and almost every other nationality under the sun. The coleniala treated numbered 775, and the next highest art English, 418 1 then com the Irish, 193, and the Scotch J3O, while Wales only contributed 7. They have come, spine of them, from long distance*, from the West Coast of the South Island, from Ifpw Plymouth aqd Napier, The tqtflqajlsatiy* days' stay in the hospital has been 57,341, or aq average <jf 35 days each. The number of outdoor patients treated during the year was 2807, and the attendance 13.291. The number of patients actually admitted during the year was 1467, and the number discharged 1348, while 109 deasf occurred, The males predominate over the temples by

A twotyear-old son of Air. Robert Hutchinson, of Walton, wai admitted to the Hamilton Hospital yesterday, wj(h a broken thigh bone. The little fellow accidentally fell off a door step with the above unfortunate result. The broken limb was at once set by Dr. Kenny, and thp child (ii doing as well as could be expected. The student; of St. John's Cpllege, Tamaki, have taken steps to give definite expression to thoir sentiments of loyalty to Her Majesty the Queen in connection-with the forthcoming Diamond Jubilee celebrations. By last Saturday's, San Francisco mail they sent to England an illuminated address to Her Majesty, and as this appears to be the only address sent from Auckland in this connection, (hp students c|aim the honor pf representing the province in this respect. It is ajso stated tint St. John's is thg only college in A|ew {Zealand whjph fiat taken such a step. The College ptudppt* are taking advantage of the presence of the Primate 0 New Zealand (Bishop Cowia) in England, and their intention is that their patriotic address will be presented to Her Majesty through the agency of His Lordship.

On the petition of three creditors Edgar Stirling Winter, cordial manufacturer, of Auckland, has been adjudged a bankrupt. Lawn tennis in Duqedin is about to suffer 9 severe loss, in the departure of two pror minent exponents of the game, in the persons of Messrs. Alfred Hogg and H. 0. Fell ton. Both gentlemen are member? of the committee of the Otago Lawn Tennis Association, and Mr. Hogg in particular has devoted much time ana labour for years past in furthering the interests of that body, ' Mr. Fetitpq was secretary of the University Club in its palmy days, and afterwards joined the Otago Club. Mr. Hogg goes to manage the Auckland branch of the firm of Messrs. A. S. Patergon and Co., and Mr. Fenton has accepted a posi-; tion in Cromwell.

It is announced that the Auckland Amateur Opera Club, whose annual muting took place last week, are about to put in active rehearsal their yearly production of eomtc opera, The opera to be performed will, in all probability, be " Dorothy," and will be staged in the same elaborate style as was "The Gondoliers" in November last, and "The Mikado" in 1895. tijp secretary, Mr. P. R. Dix, has booked d*kfi at the Opera Bouse for September, and the committee are determined to maintain the yefy high standard which has oharactfriisd the Club's efforts during the past eleven years. ________

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LOCAL AND GENERAL NEWS. New Zealand Herald, Volume XXXIV, Issue 10446, 19 May 1897

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